“Not caring about things since 1971, so that you don’t have to.”
7. Thanksgiving. Actually, that’s not quite true. It’s Thanksgiving angst. Save your moaning for Morrissey, hipster boy. Save your lectures on pilgrims and commercialism for Howard Zinn, you predictable twat. Eat some turkey, smile, have a slice of pie. It’s not about politics, it’s a plea for proximity. It’s an excuse to cram a bunch of people together into a too-warm room, get the meat sweats, drink cheap wine, and enjoy an eight hour reprieve from the narcissism of complaint.
6. Daniel Handler. He’ll never truly recover from An Unfortunate Series of Watermelon Jokes. Ever. But we understand Lemony Snicket is collaborating on a new picture book with Michael Richards.
5. The new Jurassic Movie. Doomed to be exactly like the old Jurassic Movie(s), except less Goldblum-ish and more product place-y. Does the world really need another masturbatory gala of CGI paleontology? Did an additional three Star Wars make anyone’s life better? Can you really improve on theoretical Velociraptors or the trembly pale fear-mask of Laura Dern?
4. Charles Manson in any capacity, except to marvel at the cultural sway this tiny, acid-crazed troll continues to wield. But that’s totally separate from marrying him. Which this cross of Squeaky Fromme and Edie Brickell, who apparently was raised by a robotic arm in a sterile lab, is about to do.
3. The 20th anniversary reissue of Dave Matthew’s Under the Table and Dreaming. Also, violins, jam-bandishness in general, and/or pretty much any brand of snide commentary about Dave Matthew’s relative level of sucking, which no matter how accurate is still like shooting fish in an avant-garde performance piece about fish-shooting.
2. Ordering light bulbs online. For the amount of wrapping required, Grandma Navy could have clear-cut the total acreage of her Louisiana farm, sold the lumber to an unnamed Taiwanese concern for pennies on the dollar, planted hemp, spent years raising the crop, hired a hundred hippies with a hundred typewriters, paid them in molly to sit down and pound away at their Selectrics, provided each with a hundred reams of artisinal hemp paper, and still none of them would have written a book half as good as the next really popular book that everyone except people who buy and read really popular books thinks sucks.
1. White Facebook Posts About Ferguson Violence. You could argue that the cop did the right thing. Or you could argue that it was just another day in Law and Order America. But you cannot argue that the shooting was utterly unjust, racist, and endemic to the shameful history of this country while also condescendingly insisting that there are “other constructive ways” besides political violence to handle the problem. Because there are no other ways to handle the problem, constructive or otherwise. No other channels, no voices to engage, no media outlets to circulate impassioned speeches through that will ever result in any significant change. The utter entitlement and complacency of American life in 2014 is epitomized far less by conservative outrage than in watery squirts of liberal support that also deigns to condemn rioting, as if an organic backlash against a corrupt power structure has “correct” white-approved forms to take, and which can then be parsed at leisure on Facebook. The main conclusion to be drawn from an endless line of racially motivated or at least racially-tinged police killings unfortunately has less to do with the specific individuals or circumstances than it does with the fact that this country remains appallingly and deeply racist despite any surface gains, with a rot that runs through every political and social institution we have. People inclined to dispute that fact do so because they have either a subconscious or cynical self-interest in perpetuating the ways in which institutional racism benefits them as individuals, communities, political groups, economic entities, and social orders. The laughable notion that there is some sort of “correct” or non-violent redress truly available to any of us ignores the fact that the very system which purports to dispense justice has since its inception been used as a state-sponsored tool for control, suppression, the extension of class hierarchy, the widening of wealth disparity, and the perpetuation of the white status quo. Don’t think that’s true? There’s a good chance it’s because your standard of living allows you not to think about it at all.